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What is Islam?

What is Islam?

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Being an Introductory Sketch of Islamic Teachings.
By Dr. Muhammad Fazl-ur-Rahman Ansari

(1) Religion of Unity. (2) Religion of “Submission to the Divine Will”. (3) Religion of Nature. (4) Religion of Discipline. (5) Religion of Truth. (6) Religion of Temperance. (7) Religion of Beauty. (8) Religion of Reason. (9) Religion of the Negation of Superstition. (10) Religion of Action. (11) Religion of Balanced Progress. (12) Religion of Scientific Quest. (13) Religion of the Sanctity of Labour. (14) Religion of the Highest Idealism in Ethics. (15) Religion of Peace and Goodwill. (16) Religion of Struggle. (17) Religion of “No Compulsion in Conversion”. (18) Religion of Brotherhood. (19) Religion of Spiritual Democracy. (20) Religion of Human Dignity. (21) Religion of Rational Sex Morality. (22) Religion of Salvation in this Life and the Hereafter. (23) Religion with Authentic and Perfect Divine Scripture. (24) Religion with the Simplest Creed. (25) Muhammad: the Pinnacle of Human Perfection. (26) Absorption in the Love of God, the Final Goal.
Being an Introductory Sketch of Islamic Teachings.
By Dr. Muhammad Fazl-ur-Rahman Ansari

(1) Religion of Unity. (2) Religion of “Submission to the Divine Will”. (3) Religion of Nature. (4) Religion of Discipline. (5) Religion of Truth. (6) Religion of Temperance. (7) Religion of Beauty. (8) Religion of Reason. (9) Religion of the Negation of Superstition. (10) Religion of Action. (11) Religion of Balanced Progress. (12) Religion of Scientific Quest. (13) Religion of the Sanctity of Labour. (14) Religion of the Highest Idealism in Ethics. (15) Religion of Peace and Goodwill. (16) Religion of Struggle. (17) Religion of “No Compulsion in Conversion”. (18) Religion of Brotherhood. (19) Religion of Spiritual Democracy. (20) Religion of Human Dignity. (21) Religion of Rational Sex Morality. (22) Religion of Salvation in this Life and the Hereafter. (23) Religion with Authentic and Perfect Divine Scripture. (24) Religion with the Simplest Creed. (25) Muhammad: the Pinnacle of Human Perfection. (26) Absorption in the Love of God, the Final Goal.

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Published by: Dynamic Sunni Orthodoxy on Jul 13, 2012
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What is Islam?
Being an Introductory Sketch of Islamic Teachings
By Dr. Muhammad Fazl-ur-Rahman Ansari(1) Religion of Unity.(2) Religion of “Submission to the Divine Will”.(3) Religion of Nature.(4) Religion of Discipline.(5) Religion of Truth.(6) Religion of Temperance.(7) Religion of Beauty.(8) Religion of Reason.(9) Religion of the Negation of Superstition.(10) Religion of Action.(11) Religion of Balanced Progress.(12) Religion of Scientific Quest.(13) Religion of the Sanctity of Labour.(14) Religion of the Highest Idealism in Ethics.(15) Religion of Peace and Goodwill.(16) Religion of Struggle.(17) Religion of “No Compulsion in Conversion”.(18) Religion of Brotherhood.(19) Religion of Spiritual Democracy.(20) Religion of Human Dignity.(21) Religion of Rational Sex Morality.(22) Religion of Salvation in this Life and the Hereafter.(23) Religion with Authentic and Perfect Divine Scripture.(24) Religion with the Simplest Creed.(25) Muhammad: the Pinnacle of Human Perfection.(26) Absorption in the Love of God, the Final Goal.
 
1. RELIGION OF UNITYUnity of God
Islam teaches the purest form of Monotheism and regards polytheism as thedeadliest sin. A Muslim addresses GOD by His personal Name: ALLAH—theword “god” and its equivalents in other languages being unstable in the matter of connotation. Allah, according to Islam, is the One God, Who is Indivisible inPerson and who has no partner: wife, son or daughter. He is the Matchless and“naught is as His likeness”. “He begetteth not, nor was He begotten”. He is theFirst, the Last, the Eternal, the Infinite, the Almighty, the Omniscient, theOmnipresent. He is the Creator, the Nourisher, the Cherisher of all things. He isthe All-just, the Avenger of the wrongs done to the weak and the oppressed, theCompassionate, the Merciful, the loving, the Guide, the Friend, the Magnificent,the Glorious, the Beautiful and the True. In short, He is the Possessor of allExcellence.Speaking of the conception of God in Islam, Gibbon, the famous westernhistorian, says:“The Creed of Muhammad is free from the suspicion of ambiguity and theQur’an is a glorious testimony to the unity of God. The prophet of Mecca rejectedthe worship of idols and men, of stars and planets, on the rational principle thatwhatever is corruptible must decay and perish, that whatever is born must die,that whatever rises must set. In the Author of the universe his rational enthusiasmconfessed and adored an infinite and Eternal Being, without form or place,without issue or similitude, present to our secret thoughts, existing by thenecessity of His own nature, and deriving from Himself all moral and intellectualperfections. These sublime truths are defined with metaphysical precision by theinterpreters of the Qur’an. A philosophic theist might subscribe to the popularcreed of the Muhammadans.”
Unity of the Universe
From the Unity of the Creator, according to Islam, proceeds the Unity of theUniverse, i.e. Unity of Creation and Unity of Purpose. In other words, theCosmos is a Moral Order.
Unity of Mankind
Islam regards the whole of mankind as an “organic unity” –a single family, andemphatically says that the distinctions on the mundane plane, the distinctions,namely, of race, color, language or territory, cannot form the ground for claims of superiority of one group over the other. The only distinction that has “value” isthat which arises at the moral and spiritual planes—namely, the distinction of “taqwa”, or, “piety and righteousness”.Prof. H. A. R. Gibb, the famous English critic of Islam says:“ . . . Islam…. possesses a magnificent tradition of inter-racial understanding andco-operation.
 No other society has such a record of success in uniting
in
 
an equality of status, of opportunity and of endeavour so many and so variousraces of mankind….. If 
ever 
 
the opposition of the great societies of East and West is to be replaced by co-operation, the mediation of Islam is anindispensable condition.
(Whither Islam?
p.379)
Unity of Religion
According to Islam, the human intellect, though a great and powerful asset, hasits natural limits, and, therefore, neither the normative nor the empirical sciencesare capable of leading humanity to a sure knowledge of ultimate truths and thecode of life base upon them. The only source of sure knowledge open tohumanity is, consequently, Divine Guidance, and that course has been actuallyopen ever since the beginnings of human life on earth. Allah raised His “Prophet”and “Messengers” and revealed His Guidance to them for transmission tohumanity. Coming from the same source, all revealed religions have, therefore,been one, i.e., ISLAM
.
Allah’s Prophets and Messengers continued to come to every country andcommunity to work in their respective limited fields. Time after time, therevealed Guidance was either lost or corrupted through human interpolation, andnew Prophets with fresh Dispensations were sent, and humanity continued toadvance from infancy to maturity. At last, when the stage of maturity wasreached—when humanity was practically to become one family—instead of sectional Guidance, a perfect, final and abiding Revelation, addressed to entiremankind and for all time, was granted in the seventh century of the Christian era.That Revelation, which recapitulates all former Revelations and thus sets a sealon the Unity of Religion, is ISLAM; the scripture which enshrines it is theHOLY QUR’AN
,
and the Prophet who brought it is the Leader of Humanity,MUHAMMAD
 
(Allah bless him!).Thus all the Prophets of God, from Adam down to Noah, Abraham, Moses andJesus (peace be upon them all), are the Prophets of a Muslim, the Holy ProphetMuhammad (peace be upon him!) being the Last and Final one, and all theDivine Scriptures are the Scriptures of a Muslim, though the follows only theHoly Quran because it alone exists in its original purity and it alone contains thereligion of Islam which has been followed by all rightly guided people since theday the first human being came into existence.
Unity of Sexes
Differentiation of functions has misled certain cultures of the world to regardwoman as a being who belongs, so to say, to a different and inferior species: andto meet out to her inhuman treatment accordingly. Islam emphatically repudiatesthat notion and teaches that both man and woman have sprung from the sameessence and the same source and consequently posses the same human status.Their functions and interests, instead of being antagonistic, are meant to becomplementary. The natural relation between the sexes, in all its aspects, istherefore, that of love and harmony, without which no true human progress canbe possible.

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